A chance to follow-up
Critical care recovery nurse Janet Shanley tickles Lise Marielle to get her to smile. Today will be Lise’s second surgery by Dr. Sam McDonald who will repair Lise’s palate. Photos by Jennifer Browning.
By Jennifer Browning
Port-au-Prince, HAITI–Taking the bumpy, winding road up to the Partner’s In Health Hospital in Cange is one of the things Rebecca Dasy remembers when she took her niece, Lise Anna Marielle to get her cleft lip surgery.
Rebecca helped her sister look into surgery in Port-au-Prince for Lise who not only needed her lip repaired but also her palate which was gaping, but in 2004 there was only one doctor who could perform this type of surgery in Haiti’s capital. This doctor’s cost was $4000. And that was only to repair Lise’s lip.
So Rebecca learned about a group of American surgeons who had traveled to Cange to perform cleft lip and palette surgeries. Lise was only 9 months old when Dr. McDonald performed cleft lip surgery on her in June 2004.
Lise is almost five years old now. Her aunt found out about the doctors returning to Port-au-Prince due to a grant provided by The Smile Train and brought Lise to Bernard Mevs to get a follow up surgery to repair Lise’s cleft palette.
Rebecca was thankful when Lise went into surgery today. She was also a bit relieved to see that the same surgeon was operating on her niece. While Project Medishare makes a major effort to see that patients have opportunities for follow-up, it is rare that a doctor donating his time in the operating room gets to meet a patient for the second time.
“I saw him walk into the room,” Rebecca said, “and I immediately remembered him as the doctor who operated on her in Cange.”
Lise’s operation was successful, and her aunt is thankful for Project Medishare and for the grant that The Smile Train provided to make this surgical trip possible.
“Your organization,” Rebecca said. “and other organizations who join you to finance this program are blessed.”